Chapter 1: His Butler, At the Wedding
Disclaimer: I do not own Kuroshitsuji
Of course he had been the first to notice the crack, this omnipotent being. He noticed the first slight crumbling and deterioration in the proverbial edifice. Only in this instance, he did not seek to repair the offending blemish. He wanted to help it grow. He hoped to nurture it from a small crack to a canyon.
Their marriage ceremony had been lavish, as was expected. In attendance were all of the finest members of society. Those in attendance busied themselves with conversation. They spoke of the beauty and pleasantness of the bride. They told the bride's parents how fortunate they were to have such a lovely and kind daughter. Then they whispered amongst themselves of how unfortunate it was that such a lovely girl should be married to someone so cynical and cold. They whispered that the man should be lucky that the betrothal was made before the accident that claimed his parents and forever changed him. Otherwise, he would never have been blessed with such a fine young woman for a wife.
Elizabeth Middleford, by all accounts, had grown into an astonishing young lady. At the age of 21 she possessed all of the traits desirable in a woman of good breeding. She was a lissome woman with gentle curves, long golden tresses and emerald green eyes. Her demeanor was kind, quiet and jovial. The consensus was that Elizabeth would make a fine spouse.
Unfortunately, the consensus for the groom was not the same. Ciel Phantomhive had grown up to be physically attractive, that no one could deny. The once petite boy had grown into a tall and robust young man. His body, while lean and limber, still possessed the broadness and sturdiness that all women desired in their men. Only his ever present eye patch marred his striking features. Where there was no criticism from the general public concerning Ciel's looks the same could not be said for his manners. Ciel came across as cold and uncaring. He made little effort to involve himself in the joys or miseries of others. Since he cared little about others, they cared little about him. He did however, make good fodder for society's busy-bodies.
There was little else to gossip about , other than the groom's cold demeanor, during the stylish wedding or the reception that followed. Everything was elegantly organized and executed. The garden had been turned into a wonderland with hanging lanterns glistening from trees and fantastic candelabras at each table. The silver and table linens were spotless. No fault could be found in the excellent cuisine or flowing champagne. Table after table was covered with delicious meats, cheeses and vegetables, all cooked to perfection. Fresh fruits and pastries were overflowing. The wedding cake was towering and artfully decorated with both confection and fresh flowers. A ice sculpture of epic proportions towered in the center of the garden, with the appearance of a work from Michelangelo.
Everything was flawless. Throughout the evening only one servant could be seen weaving in and out of the numerous guests. He moved quickly and gracefully; pulling out chairs, filling glasses and serving food. No guest was left wanting, but all were left amazed by his ability and his good looks. The tall dark haired man garnered the attention of all of the female guests, and some of the male. One inquisitive elderly woman summoned his attention. Even at her age she blushed when watching the young man approach her.
"My dear," she began "I am astonished by your performance this evening. Your Master must hold you in high regard to trust you to single-handedly run his wedding. Or, am I to assume that the Phantomhive fortune has taken a turn for the worse and the estate can no longer afford more than one servant?"
The striking butler, Sebastian, responded, "I assure you madam, my Master's estate has never been more profitable and we have other servants in our employ. However, they are all tied up at the moment. The responsibility of the wedding is an easy task. After all, I am one hell of a butler."
He took the elderly woman's hand and placed a kiss upon her fingers before dashing away, leaving her flushed and blushing. Turning to her table mates she questioned why the other servants were "all tied up." After all, what could be more important than their Master's wedding?
Little did any of the guest know that three of the other four servants of the Phantomhive family sat no more than a yard away, bound with rope to the high branches of a tall tree, looking out over the festivities. The cook, maid and gardener all discussed the night amongst themselves, and agreed how nice it was for Sebastian to let them see the wedding. This was, after all, not the first time they had been bound to keep from causing trouble. At least this time they weren't locked in the basement or closet as well. Sebastian had been following orders to let nothing spoil the evening. The fourth remaining servant sat quietly from the tallest room in the estate. He watched events from the window, sipped his tea and quietly wrote in his journal, recording as always the things he had witnessed at the Phantomhive estate.
After the last guest trickled off the estate the other servants were released to clean up from the day's events. Sebastian lead the way for Ciel and Elizabeth, now man and wife, back to the estate. Opening the manor door for them he watched them enter, Elizabeth beaming and Ciel as indifferent as usual. With his usual speed he dashed ahead and left a tray of tea in the master suite and left the couple alone for what was supposed to be their first night of wedded bliss. A tinge of jealousy sparked within him.